Mario, a retired teacher, voted Leave in 2016. He did so as he was promised a Brexit deal and more money for the NHS. But now he considers his vote has been hijacked and, as a result, he has changed his mind. He is a Remainer Now.

First published in June 2019.

I voted Leave. I listened to the Leave politicians who promised all sorts of deals which sounded great. One in particular, Davis I think, said that we would have all our present material benefits with the added addition of not having to pay all that money into the EU. When I found out that was a lie I felt pretty stupid.

As stated I voted for a deal. Now I’ve been told that I didn’t really vote for a deal, that I really voted to leave without a deal. My vote has been, to my mind, hijacked to mean something for which I did not intend it. The mistake was all mine in this regard I have been told. Now my vote is being used in a way that was not intended. This is fine as this is democracy, I have been told. I didn’t know that if one voted for a particular outcome someone, could represent that outcome as meaning a completely different outcome. I feel pretty stupid about that.

I voted for the extra money for the NHS that was promised on the side of the bus. We’re giving all of this cash to the EU. Why not give it to the NHS? I’ve since been told that although one of these sentences followed the other that did not mean that the two sentences were in any way related. And further, the people who said this had no right to say it. I wondered, as these were public faces then why would they say these things? I feel pretty stupid about that.

I’ve always believed that in a democracy one listened to the arguments put forward by politicians. One read the manifesto. One deliberated, one came to a decision and one placed an X beside one’s choice based on this well thought out democratic stratagem. I’ve since been told that I’m wrong about this. Including Piers Morgan on a recent Question Time.

Apparently the correct method is to ignore what the politicians say, ignore the manifesto, the last Tory manifesto for the GM promised a deal, and just read what’s beside where you’re going to place your X. As this space never held any information whatsoever, except Leave/Remain then it means that there had been really nothing to consider as “Leave means Leave.” What Leave actually meant had been decided by others. Who these ‘others’ were and how they came to this definition of Leave I have not been able to find out.

I’m now 65 years old and have voted in this way for as long as I’ve been able to vote. Now I’ve found out that the proper way to vote is just have a look at the ballot paper and skip everything else. I feel pretty stupid.

I have other friends who voted Leave. We discussed this at length before the referendum and like me they wanted a good deal and voted along these lines. Or so we thought. Now I find out this was never the case. They knew all along there would be no deal, they always wanted out without a deal.

During all of those conversations I must not have listened properly. I feel pretty stupid about that.

I don’t know if everyone who voted Leave feels stupid. But there’s one here.🔷

By Mario Martini.

Share this article now:

[This piece was originally published on Quora Answer and re-published in PMP Magazine on 13 June 2019, with the author’s consent. | The author writes in a personal capacity.]

Creative Commons License
(Cover: Flickr/Michiel - Amsterdam. / Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.)